Alarmed? Don't be.
The fibre network we are building around the country is providing New Zealanders with access to some of the best broadband available in the world. But with this once-in-a-generation infrastructure upgrade comes the possibility that previously connected devices may no longer be compatible – one being your home or medical alarm.
Many home security and medical alarms are connected to, and operate over, our existing copper network. When you upgrade to fibre we replace the copper lines with new fibre optic cable and this can affect your existing alarm system.
So what to do? If you’re upgrading to fibre and have a monitored home or medical alarm there are a few important things to consider:
Let your broadband provider know
When you place your order for fibre with your broadband provider, be sure to let them know you have a monitored home security or medical alarm that relies on your current copper connection so we can take the right steps to keep them fully operational when you switch from copper to fibre.
Get in touch with your alarm provider
Once you’ve ordered fibre, get in touch with your alarm provider to see if your alarm will be compatible with your new fibre broadband service. If you’re upgrading your alarm, it’s a good idea to get it set up and ready to go before you get connected to fibre to minimise any interruptions during the switchover on the day your fibre’s installed.
Can I keep my existing alarm?
Many modern alarms will allow you to change connection type and will already have the functionality to do this built in. Older alarms may require an additional IP module to make it compatible, these cost around $200-$250 and can be supplied by security or alarm companies. When we install fibre at your place, usually the copper cabling is removed but you can request that it remains in place if you want to keep your existing alarm set up. But of course, with dual lines servicing your property comes two monthly plan charges.
What will happen to my alarm if the power goes out?
Unlike copper connections, alarm systems connected to fibre won’t operate if the power is off. If your alarm system is a necessity, you may want to consider a battery backup for your fibre equipment and modem to make sure it continues to operate if there’s a power outage.
Does your alarm still meet your needs?
Today’s alarms are much more sophisticated – you can now arm and disarm them remotely, link your smoke detectors to your alarm, receive notifications, video footage and photos and view activity logs. And they can all be controlled by your smartphone. If you have an older alarm and are deciding whether to add an IP module, it’s worth thinking about whether or not your alarm is still doing the job you want it to.